As we prepare to celebrate The Fatima Centennial at St. Joseph the Worker thru November 26, 2017, it helps for us to have a little background, and so for the next few months we will be getting to know our Lady of Fatima with some historical background and stories compiled by Fr. Joseph Previtali, a priest from the Archdiocese of San Francisco, and Adjunct Instructor of Dogmatics, St. Patrick's Seminary, Menlo Park.
Part XXIV: BY THE END OF SEPTEMBER, VLADIMIR LENIN, who had returned to Russia at the beginning of 1917 from his exile in Switzerland, had been in hiding in Finland for more than two months. He was a fugitive from an arrest order given after the failed Communist uprising in July. He would become in a short time the father of the Communist Revolution in Russia.
His words, written from Helsinki at the end of September, reveal his diabolical ambition: "The Bolsheviki can and must take the state power into their hands…An insurrection must rest on a turning point in the history of a growing revolution, when the activity of the leading ranks of the people is greatest and when the waverings in the ranks of the enemies and of the weak, half-hearted, undecided friends of the revolution are greatest. In Russia there are still great resources both material and spiritual for a truly revolutionary way; there are 99 chances out of 100 that the Germans will at least give us a truce. And to secure a truce at present — this means already to conquer the whole world."
Warren Carroll describes dramatically the world situation at the end of September, 1917: "Across a continent, across a cosmos, across the immense wreckage of Western Christian civilization, they faced each other, the ultimate surviving antagonists of the apocalyptic year 1917: the girl-woman all in radiant white, with the lovely voice and the gentle, serious mien, Queen of Heaven and earth, Mother of God, who had promised that her Immaculate Heart would one day prevail in Russia and bring peace to all the world; and Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov called Lenin, with his jarring voice and his whip-crack laugh and his bald bullet head and his mighty brain, ready to take Russia and the whole world for himself and his atheist, materialist creed, certain that the time had come for him to strike and to win."
And yet, in the mystery of Divine Providence and Divine Love and Divine Mercy, Carroll reminds us, the Mother of God, the Iberian Virgin, had come to the three shepherd children in Portugal even to save the soul of Vladimir Ilyich Ulyanov in Finland. "Yet he too was her son, though he had put her out of his life since the days he had cherished the traditional Russian Christmas as a child, and the currents of her love and, above all, the lover of her Son Who is God, thrust ceaselessly against the iron bars of his heart."
Next Week: Part XXV of the fascinating story and history of Our Lady of Fatima.
Our basic mission at St. Joseph the Worker is to offer God's people beautiful liturgies, healing & reconciliation. If you have been blessed by your visit to St. Joseph, please consider blessing our parish with a gift. Through generous donations by faithful people like yourself, we intend on restoring this historic church back to its former glory, little by little.
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Bishop Michael Barber has appointed newly ordained transitional Deacon Arturo Bazan to St. Joseph the Worker to be with our parish community in order to gain additional ministerial and pastoral experiences during his last year of priestly formation at St. Patrick's Seminary in Menlo Park, California. Deacon Bazan will be with us mostly on Sunday's and for other important events such as weddings, funerals, baptisms, etc., thru May 2018, when he is then scheduled to be ordained a priest for the Diocese of Oakland.
Photo from Catholic Voice
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